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Found a pair of 1972 Pioneer SE-30A for $10

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I found these things today at a local thrift store and couldn't resist that classic charm.  They came with the original manual, a product catalog, a bottle of record cleaner, and a nice faux leather case.

 

Here are some pictures of them:

IMG_20111230_141726.jpg

 

IMG_20111230_141759.jpg

 

IMG_20111230_141812.jpg

 

The sound is not bad.  The only comparators I have are my Sennheiser HD555 and a friend's Audio Technica M50s, so here goes: They aren't heavy on the bass, but it is there.  The bass I'd say is close to the HD555s.  The highs are a bit muddy and lay behind the mids.  They barely leak sound; you really have to listen for the leakage.  I'm powering them with an old Pioneer VSX-D409 and they sound fine.  I tried plugging them into my phone just for fun and actually thought they sounded a little better on there than through the amp.  With an 8ohm resistance, it's not really that surprising.  I need to EQ them as best I can and I think this will be well worth the $10 I spent.

post #2 of 12

Haha that's pretty cool. I think the coolest part is the case.

post #3 of 12

Looks nice ,they must be a collectors item if they are 1972 and worth more than $10 i would have thought.

post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redrider469 View Post

Haha that's pretty cool. I think the coolest part is the case.



Yeah, the case is really cool.  I didn't see that anywhere else.

 

There is foam inside each of the earcups.  Is this helping or hurting the overall performance of the headphones?

post #5 of 12

Hey Now,

 

Those are exactly the first headphones I bought when I was growing up in Japan. I was a sophomore in high school and just got a nice Technics stereo for my bedroom. I was in my own bit of audio heaven. Moved onto to some Koss when I went to college stateside.

 

Great find and thanks for the memories.

 

--

Finest kind,

Chris

post #6 of 12

Wow, congrats on the purchase. The cans and case looks to be in excellent condition, do the cans weigh much when you put them on?

post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 

Quote:
Originally Posted by warubozu View Post

Wow, congrats on the purchase. The cans and case looks to be in excellent condition, do the cans weigh much when you put them on?



The biggest problem I read about with these are the leather pads deteriorating over time, but these are in perfect condition; no cracks to speak of.  They aren't as heavy as the Koss HV/1s I have...and they actually work :D  I could see these getting a little heavy after a few hours though.

 

Edit: Man, taking out the foam from the inside was a bad idea.  The sound bounced around really badly and made everything sound like I was in a room with nothing in it.  All the sound reflected and bounced around way too much.  I'm going to try experimenting with some new foam and wee if I can improve on the foam that's already in there.


Edited by Stig-san - 12/30/11 at 7:52pm
post #8 of 12

Congrats! Nice little bargain you found, and a jump back into the 1970's.

post #9 of 12

That's very nice,I think the price of 10 $ is low for an item like this. :-)

 

Old things always have their own magic... 

post #10 of 12

Wow, those are sweet nice find sir. :) 

post #11 of 12

Hey do you still have these headphones? I have a pair of them myself & the left speaker has blown. If I could get them from you I would pay you $15 case & all, my old case is a bit ratty.

I hope you still have them.

Rhys

post #12 of 12

I own a 1971 Pioneer SE-30. The last year they made these before the "a" model went into effect. I don't know if there's really anything different between the "a" version and the "non-a" version. Mine didn't come in a nice fancy box like the ones stig-san has. Mine came in the original box which is a satin lined cardboard box. I have the original manual and all the original packaging to mine. 

 

As far as the sound goes, I really enjoyed them before I got my Audio-Technica ATH-M50's which just blew the SE-30 out of the water. I still use it from time to time, but I pretty much only use it as a historical piece now. The SE-30 is definitely muddy sounding. It's got nice mids and not too bad lows for the era they were made in. The biggest pluses about them is how comfortable they are to wear and their isolation.

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